Panthers' Rivera defends decision on failed 2-point conversion

Gregory Shamus / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera defended his somewhat controversial decision to attempt a two-point conversion late in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 20-19 loss to the Detroit Lions.

Cam Newton connected with D.J. Moore on an eight-yard touchdown pass, cutting Detroit's lead to 20-19. Although an extra point would've tied the game at 20 apiece, Rivera elected for a riskier option. It proved costly, as Newton missed an open Jarius Wright in the end zone.

"I think you go for two on the road to win the game - that's what I did end of the day," Rivera said, according to NFL.com's Austin Knoblauch. "What's to say the coin toss is going to in our favor or [what's to say] we're going to stop them.

"I was going for the win. That's the bottom line."

Rivera also noted that kicker Graham Gano's poor performance contributed to his decision to go for two. Gano missed a 34-yard field goal and an extra point prior to Newton's fourth-quarter touchdown.

"He missed a couple of kicks, that's all part of it," Rivera said.

Carolina sits at 6-4 and is still primed to make the playoffs, but if it falls out of contention, Rivera's risk could prove costly in the long run.

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Panthers' Rivera defends decision on failed 2-point conversion
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